Publisher: Cutting Edge Press
So then, a book set in my home town....well that would be ridiculously hard to find as I'm from a little village in Wales originally...so I chose this as it's set in Cardiff which is the nearest big city and it's where my Dad is from...deal with it.
When it comes to CEP books, I've noticed that the publishers either lead you along by a delicate hand or smack you full on in the face, and this book is definitely of the latter category. Also, this book is easy to get involved in as all of us can relate to it as we all have friends like this group who we want to love, and protect who we have allegiances with, who we have a web of deceit with and who in some instances we lie to!
The whole time I was reading the book I was struggling with my feelings for the main characters. I don't really know if I liked them at all now I think about the book almost 5 weeks after reading it and at the time I continually struggled. Sometimes I felt sorry for one and hated others, some times I loved them all for their own qualities and sometimes I loved them for their group and friendship as a whole. They are a really marmite bunch.
The style of writing makes the whole novel feel a bit autobiographical and very personal. The end in particular did that and I would indeed be interested to know if BJ has put any of herself/life/friends into the book.
I have one criticism of the novel and that is the use of Welsh turns of phrase. They are not consistent enough to have been included at all, in my opinion. They feel like a bit of an after thought/addition made during editing...but that could be just me.
All in all, a very dark (true to CEP) novel which is overwhelmingly sad at the same time. Defoe another read from the CEP cannon that fans will want to read.